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Why NJ Small Businesses Need to Prioritize Cybersecurity: Insights and Strategies

Why NJ Small Businesses Need to Prioritize Cybersecurity: Insights and Strategies

As a small business owner, it is easy to think that your business is too small to become a target of all the data breaches happening around you. After all, those breaches tend to hit massive international enterprises with data worth hacking, right? Well, no. While you may see large companies claiming to have been attacked by cybercriminals in the news, small and midsize businesses (SMBs) are often attacked as well. Let’s talk about why small businesses in New Jersey must focus on cybersecurity and some insights and strategies that can help you make informed decisions about your data security.

Key Takeaways

  • SMBs are not only susceptible to cyberattacks but also face substantial financial losses and reputational damage.
  • Cybercriminals target SMBs for various reasons, including financial gain, data theft, and exploiting vulnerabilities in supply chain connections to larger entities.
  • To effectively defend against cyber threats, SMBs must adopt a proactive and evolving cybersecurity strategy. This includes investing in Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs) or building an in-house cybersecurity team to mitigate risks and respond swiftly to security incidents.

The Big Picture of Cyberattacks on Small NJ Businesses

The Verizon 2023 Data Breach Investigation Report (DBIR) found that 43 percent of all cyberattacks target small businesses. Within months of those attacks, the small businesses  closed their doors forever, as the  attackers did irreversible damage to not only the business’s finances but their reputation. The DBIR also stated that SMBs spend, on average, $826 and $653,587 dealing with cybersecurity incidents. This range is expected to increase by 15 percent by 2026.

With numbers like this, it becomes clear that cybersecurity is something you should already have invested in rather than paying to solve issues after the fact. There is also no shortage of cyberthreats out there, and they are evolving as tactics to surmount them change. This is not something that businesses can easily handle on their own, which is why it is also essential to have a Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) or in-house team assist your business with cybersecurity measures.

What Makes Your NJ Small Business a Target of Cyberattacks?

Why exactly are New Jersey’s small businesses finding themselves at the crosshairs of cybercriminals? Here are some of the reasons:

1. Malicious Purposes

Cybercriminals typically have malicious intent when it comes to your business’s data or even your company’s online presence. One common tactic is to compromise a company’s computers and transform them into a botnet—a network of hijacked devices under the control of a malicious actor.

These botnets are then used to launch Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, flooding targeted websites or networks with overwhelming traffic and disrupting their services. By leveraging the computational resources of SMBs, cybercriminals can orchestrate large-scale attacks capable of causing significant financial losses and reputational damage to businesses.

2. Valuable Data Assets

One of the primary reasons SMBs are targeted by cybercriminals is the presence of valuable data within their systems. Despite their size, these companies handle sensitive information that holds significant monetary value on the Dark Web. From medical records and credit card details to Social Security numbers and proprietary business data, SMBs often possess a treasure trove of exploitable data.

Cybercriminals understand the lucrative potential of this information. They employ various tactics, such as phishing scams, malware, and data breaches, to infiltrate SMB networks and exfiltrate valuable data. This stolen data can be used for a range of illicit activities, including identity theft, financial fraud, and even corporate espionage.

3. Vulnerable Links to Larger Entities

In today’s interconnected business ecosystem, SMBs often serve as crucial links in supply chains and partnerships with larger enterprises. Hackers recognize that these smaller entities may have less robust cybersecurity measures compared to their larger counterparts. As a result, they target SMBs as entry points to infiltrate the systems of more prominent organizations.

By compromising a smaller business, cybercriminals can exploit trust relationships and gain unauthorized access to sensitive data or networks belonging to larger companies. This tactic allows them to bypass the potentially stronger defenses of major corporations and carry out sophisticated cyberattacks with far-reaching consequences.

4. Entirely for Profit

Ultimately, the primary motive driving cyberattacks against NJ small businesses, as with any other organization, is financial gain. While some attacks may aim to cause disruption, such as DDoS attacks, the majority are motivated by the prospect of monetary rewards.

Ransomware attacks have surged in popularity among cybercriminals targeting SMBs. These attacks involve encrypting critical data or systems and demanding a ransom payment in exchange for decryption keys. The profitability of ransomware schemes incentivizes hackers to continue targeting vulnerable businesses, perpetuating a cycle of extortion and financial exploitation.

Defending Your Small Business Against Cyber Threats

So how do you keep your business safe from these kinds of attacks and tactics? As mentioned earlier, the best defense is an ongoing and evolving one. That is where a Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) comes in.

MSSPs provide proactive threat monitoring and detection, continuously scanning networks for suspicious activities to identify and respond to emerging threats swiftly. In the event of a security incident, MSSPs offer rapid incident response and mitigation, minimizing downtime and financial losses by containing the threat and restoring normal operations promptly.

Through regular vulnerability assessments and penetration testing, MSSPs help organizations address security weaknesses and mitigate the risk of exploitation by cybercriminals. They also assist businesses in achieving and maintaining compliance with industry-specific security regulations and data protection standards, ensuring they meet regulatory requirements and safeguard sensitive data.

Moreover, MSSPs leverage cutting-edge technology and employ skilled professionals—two valuable resources to small businesses. They also  offer scalable and flexible cybersecurity solutions tailored to meet the evolving needs of businesses. Whether it’s providing additional security services during periods of increased threat activity or adjusting security controls to accommodate changes in business operations, MSSPs offer agility and adaptability to ensure effective protection against cybercriminals.


Contact a MSSP for Your Small Business’s Cybersecurity Today

Cyberattacks are a growing threat against businesses, regardless of their size. If your business has valuable data, it is a potential victim. By understanding the motivations behind these attacks and implementing comprehensive security strategies, SMBs can better protect their valuable data, computing resources, and interconnected relationships from the ever-evolving threat landscape of cybercrime. It is also recommended that you secure a partner to assist in securing your data and maintaining your digital protection.

PCH Technologies can assist you in fortifying your small business in NJ against cyber threats. Our expert team specializes in delivering comprehensive cybersecurity solutions tailored to the unique needs of SMBs. Contact us now at 844-754-7500 or by filling out the online form.